Soviet prisoners


The fate of Soviet prisoners, particularly those involved in World War II and their return to the Soviet Union, is a deeply tragic aspect of Soviet history. Many Soviet soldiers who were taken prisoner and then released after the war faced severe penalties upon their return. They were often arrested, tried, and either sent to gulag camps or executed because they were viewed as having been corrupted by their exposure to Western ideologies while in captivity. This resulted in a significant number of these former prisoners opting to emigrate to other countries like Canada or the northwestern United States instead of returning home, where their fate would likely be imprisonment or death 1.

Moreover, the Soviet gulag camps were brutal labor camps where conditions were harsh and often fatal. These camps were part of a system established as early as the 1920s under Stalin. Despite not being designed as extermination camps like those of Nazi Germany, the mortality rate was high due to the extreme conditions. It is estimated that several million Soviet citizens were incarcerated in these gulags from the 1920s until the early 1950s, with many dying either en route to or within the camps themselves 1.

Soviet Prisoners, Gulag Archipelago

Explore the dark history of Soviet prisoners during the 1930s and the establishment of the Gulag Archipelago. Learn about the fate of Soviet soldiers returning home after World War II and the reasons why some chose to come to Canada or the northwestern part of the United States instead of going back to the Soviet Union. Discover the harsh conditions and high mortality rates in the labor camps, which were estimated to have held several million Soviet citizens between the 1920s and early 1950s.


Kevin McKenna on Solzhenitsyn, the Soviet Union, and In the First Circle